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Montreal-born singer-songwriter Laraw (Lara Rawadi) is a pop music anomaly. Hailing from Lebanese and Moroccan roots, Laraw grew up with three languages around her: French, English and Arabic. By having so many different ways to express, Laraw has been able to view music as another just another language to be fluent in, using notes and lyrics as an unconventional way to bare her soul. Which is why her poignant tracks reflect her life as a young artist navigating a culmination of cultures, scenes, languages and codes she’s immersed herself in.
“Nothing can reflect who you are and what you have been through like a chorus,” she says of her track work so far. “Even if it’s just a word or a sound that is repeated, I believe music can represent what I’m always going after—the truth.”
In a world so connected, “This Is How I Lost My Friends” expresses how disconnected singer-songwriter Laraw became this past year and is deeply apologetic for shutting out those closest to her. She explains, “Last year was f@*ked. I just stopped talking to everyone because I had nothing left to say. People who’ve known me for a while know that I don’t like going out or hanging out with anyone to begin with but last year was different. I needed someone to ask me how I was doing and no one did - no one could really, we were all going through it”.
Co-written by Laraw and Michael Adubato (Maude Latour, Del Water Gap and Grace VanderWaal) and produced by Adubato as well, “This Is How I Lost My Friends” is an upbeat catchy track that captures her inability to cope with the past year, acknowledging it, and apologizing to her friends the only way she knows how: through music. “I miss my friends and can’t wait for us to be all safe again. Until then, “This Is How I Lost My Friends”. Not because I wanted to but because life happened, anxiety got the best of me and I didn't feel like asking for help.”
Laraw is also a self-obsessed gamer who is seriously inspired by platform video game soundtracks such as Spyro, which featured compositions created by none other than Stewart Copeland, drummer from legendary British band, The Police. Laraw’s own work builds on the same type of extreme emotion you hear while leveling up or facing an epic challenge. “It’s just like life, I want to capture the same intensity and those extremes make you feel so happy, stressed out, relieved and passionate while you’re playing,”
This trial-by-fire approach to creating songs extends to her own aesthetic as well, as she often chooses out-of-the-box clothing designers such as Rémi van Bochove to collaborate with when she’s tasked to shoot videos or take part in photo shoots for fashion magazines like Elle Quebec. Her sound and vision stems from a need to be authentic to who she is and ignore outdated music industry standards.
“I’m against anyone or thing that puts pressure to be perfect or make presumptions because that’s all a lie,” she says. “It’s so degrading to be expected to be anything but yourself so that’s what you’ll always see and hear from me,” she says. “I'm not afraid to tell people how I feel with my music,” she says. “When it comes to me, there’s no time to waste.